According to a surprise report published by the German cryptocurrency media agency BTC-ECHO, the European Parliament, one of the legislative branches of the European Union, has plans to ban Bitcoin and other proof-of-work (PoW) cryptocurrencies.
The final draft of the Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) regulatory framework, the much-anticipated package of cryptocurrency regulations, includes a specific provision that makes illegal the “environmentally unsustainable” consensus mechanism.
What does this mean? This means that Bitcoin could become illegal within the countries of the European Union starting from Jan. 1, 2025.
Businesses in EU would be prohibited from offering any services associated with ‘proof-of-work’ cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin.
Stefan Berger, the center-right rapporteur behind the framework, told the media that the proposal was “very likely” to be greenlit, because it has overwhelming support from both sides.
The regulation was pushed by center-left Social Democrats, the Greens and the Left Party. Some Christian Democrats and right-wing conservatives opposed the addition of the Bitcoin ban, but it was a deal-breaker for the parties that supported cracking down on proof-of-work.
The European Commission, the executive branch of the European Union, will now engage in a trialogue with the member states and the Parliament before reaching a final decision later this year.
Patrick Hansen, head of growth & strategy at decentralized finance startup Unstoppable Finance, described the proposal as “suicidal,” predicting that it would kill the entire crypto industry in the EU.